Muriel Sommers is a breast and lung cancer survivor. Her breast cancer was diagnosed on a mammogram in 2008 and was believed to be small and noninvasive. After consulting with her oncologist, she decided to have a lumpectomy. During the surgery, it was discovered that the small Stage IIA breast cancer had spread to one lymph node.
Because of the metastasis, Muriel had a PET scan, which diagnosed her early-stage lung cancer. She had robotic surgery to remove the affected lung lobe, and, after a short hospital stay, went back to work. Two weeks later, she began six rounds of chemotherapy. She lost her hair, and for the past three years has been taking Femara, an aromatase inhibitor. Both cancers were primary cancers, which, in the world of cancer, was very good news.
Muriel claims that breast cancer saved her life, and she has been working at promoting an “Early Detection Saves Lives” message to anyone who will listen. For almost three years she had worked at the Florida Breast Cancer Foundation, the organization behind the End Breast Cancer license plate. As development manager, she was responsible for increasing awareness of the disease and helping educate the general public about breast cancer, symptoms, risks and treatments.
Muriel is a well-respected member of the advertising/marketing/publishing community. She is part of the team that founded the South Florida Business Journal, where she is best known for development of the newspaper’s popular Book of Lists. After many years working with magazines throughout the state, including Florida Trend, Florida Home & Garden and South Florida magazine, she created her own marketing management consulting firm. Among her most prestigious clients were the International Advertising Association, World Trade Center Miami, WorldCity Business, Synovate and Casa & Estilo magazine.
Muriel strongly believes that you should practice what you preach, and is marketing chair for the American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life East Kendall at Baptist Health South Florida as well as a team captain. She is proud to say that she walked in the very first Susan G. Komen Race in Palm Beach County 25 years ago and in every Komen race in South Florida ever since. She also serves on the board of directors of Neighbors 4 Neighbors Channel 4.
Today, in addition to celebrating her official birthday on September 25 (she’s a Libra), two other important dates on her calendar are her two cancer “birthdays” – January 2 (breast) and February 14 (lung).
PLEASE JOIN THE CONVERSATION
As a part of our mission to make The Journey a powerful voice for everyone in our community, we invite each of you to consider joining the conversation and sharing your journey with comments and feedback. You don’t have to be a breast cancer survivor, you can be a caregiver, or a friend, or a concerned citizen. What we are looking for is meaningful and helpful conversations that will encourage other people as they travel along their journey. Sharing is caring and very cathartic. I sincerely urge you to take part.